How to subtract dates on a microsoft excel table easy and fast? Step-by-step guide

Excel is software developed by Microsoft and included in the Office Suite. It is designed to organize data in tables, being able to perform hundreds of operations and formulas on it. In addition, it has a large number of tools and utilities that facilitate the analysis, categorization and updating of information.

One of the most used operations in this program is addition and subtraction . They are used in budgets, summaries, data analysis, etc. But on many occasions, we need to compute or analyze time periods .

And in this case, performing operations of this type can be confusing . Therefore, we present the following post, where you will learn everything about subtracting dates.

When is it convenient to subtract dates in an Excel document?

Although adding years to a given date is a simple task to solve, since the decimal method is used, like any other integer. In the case of months and days it can be a bit more cumbersome . Above all, if we must add a large figure or we have to do it with several dates .

For example, if you want to postpone multiple events for three weeks, you would waste time doing the calculations manually . On the other hand, through simple functions, you can do it in a very simple way, even if it were hundreds of dates .

In addition to adding weeks, it is possible to subtract them, the same happens with days or even years .

Learn step by step how to subtract dates from an Excel spreadsheet

As we mentioned before, these are very simple formulas to apply. They will serve you in all types of projects.

You just have to follow these steps:

  • Open Microsoft Excel with the shortcut on the desktop or from the start menu.
  • Create a new spreadsheet or access the one where you have the dates.
  • In a column, it can be the first, put those dates to which you want to add or subtract time.

  • Although, it is usually automatic, make sure that all the ones you entered have the “Date” format , it does not matter if it is long or short.
  • If it is not with this provision, you can replace it from the “Home” tab , in the “Number” section , change “General” to “Short date” or “Long date”.
  • In the second column enter the number of days, months or years that you want to modify. If you are going to subtract them add a minus sign before the number, if you are adding leave it like that. The format of this column should be kept as “General” .
  • In the third column is where we will enter the function . It must have a date format.

  • For days, you only have to add the cell in the first column plus the cell in the second . In the example in the image it looks like this: “= A2 + B2” .
  • If you need to add or remove months we will use the DATE.MONTH argument that will tell the program that we want to change the referred segment.

  • To do this, write in the cell “= DATE.MONTH (the cell that includes the date to be modified; the one that contains the figure to be added)” . In the example, it looks like “DATE: MONTH (A2; B2)” .

  • In the event that you want to change the year of a single date, we recommend doing it in the traditional way. But if there are many, you can use the function in the example “= DATE (YEAR (A2) + B2; MONTH (A2); DAY (A2))” . Where A2 is the start date and B2 is the figure to be added.

As you can see in this last action, the function separates cell A2 into three segments and adds the value of B2 only to the one that represents the year.

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